House prices climb 1pc but Wales lags behind

Sam Cordon

August 29, 2013

London and the East Midlands experienced the greatest monthly rise with a movement of 2.1% while Wales and the North East saw the greatest decrease in monthly prices with a decrease of 0.5%.

The South East topped the table of regional applications in July with 308,448 with an average house price of £212,934; in contrast Wales registered just 65,532 applications and an average house price of £115,149.

Charles Haresnape, managing director of Aldermore Residential Mortgages, said: “Land Registry data published today confirms the continued rise in house prices driven mainly by the South East of England.

“It is staggering to see that in this region prices are now above pre-crash levels.We need to be mindful that government schemes will fuel these rises further but customer affordability should be a natural break on unsustainability.”

Annually house prices in England and Wales rose by 0.8%. London experienced the greatest increase in its average property value over the last 12 months with a movement of 6.3%.

Wales came bottom of the table again with the greatest fall with an annual drop of 2.2%.

In the prime property segment of the market, properties which sold for over £1m in England and Wales in May 2013 increased by 28% to 740 from 576 in May 2012.

Jonathan Hopper, managing director of property search consultants Garrington, said: “London property is rocketing especially at the top end of the market. Land Registry figures show sales of £1m properties up almost 30% in May compared to 12 months ago.

“A significant percentage of these sales are to foreign investors that continue to buy up large swathes of the best real estate in the capital.”

Peter Rollings, chief executive of Marsh & Parsons, said: “Our research has found a 14% increase in prime London property values in the last year but we expect this rate of growth to stabilise.

“The Land Registry figures also demonstrate the complexity of the London market and the varying levels of growth in its mosaic of different areas.

“Some may be surprised to see the London boroughs of Lambeth and Wandsworth increasing at a faster rate than Kensington & Chelsea thanks to the gentrification of these up and coming areas.”

The most up to date completed house sale figures in England and Wales increased by 19% to 62,651 compared to 52,516 in May 2012.

Meanwhile repossessions volumes decreased by 23% in May 2013 to 1,365 compared with 1,765 in May 2012.

The region with the greatest fall in the number of repossessions was Yorkshire & The Humber where repossessions dropped by 32%; 185 in May 2013 compared with 272 in May 2012.

Alexander Gosling, director of online estate agents Housesimple.co.uk, said: “The repossession numbers are arguably the most eye-catching in this report.

Repossessions have fallen by over 400 cases per month relative to a year ago. And while the data isn’t quite complete yet this is still a noticeable trend.”

Gosling said lower repossession numbers were much better news for the property market long term than higher average prices as they indicate a strengthening of the market’s infrastructure.


Sign up to our daily email